Grand finale at Sherwood Forest

From John Hennessy:

The kitchen qaurters are obscured by trees.

Last night we held our final History at Sunset of the 2011 season–a tour at Sherwood Forest in Stafford County.  We have written about Sherwood before, and the Free Lance-Star did a very nice lead-in piece earlier this week, which you can find here. The FLS article helps explain the immense turnout we had last night: 335 people, which is by a wide margin the biggest turnout we have ever had for a History at Sunset program in the ten years of the series. Because of a momentary collision between my leg and my chainsaw earlier this week (I will be fine–just needs healing), Donald Pfanz jumped in and and with Caity Stuart did the program.

Several months ago Sherwood Forest was named by Preservation Virginia as one of the state’s most endangered historic sites. We’ll share more about this profoundly significant and compelling place going forward.

Once again–and despite some real challenges with heat and storms–this year’s History at Sunset program was another resounding success, averaging more than 140 per program. This is exceptionally impressive because many of the programs were at Wilderness, Chancellorsville, and Spotsylvania, which traditionally attract smaller crowds, but not this year. The park staff meets on September 2 to start planning next year’s programs, so all ideas are welcome.

The area of Sherwood Forest today

6 thoughts on “Grand finale at Sherwood Forest

  1. It was indeed a wonderful program in spite of the raindrops. This was our first year of attending these programs and they are wonderful. I am already looking forward to next summer and wondering what I am going to do with my Friday nights until then. Hope the leg heals quickly!

  2. how about doing these on a different day of the week? it is impossible to get down to the Fredericksburg area from NoVA on a Friday in the summer in less than 3 hours.
    there were several of your events I was interested in, but would have had to take the day off and leave at 10am. i am sure i am not the only one.


    • Greg: When we started History at Sunset ten years ago, we had little idea that it would work for precisely the reasons you cite. We have been happily astonished at the willingness of people to come out after a week’s work and, for many, a drive home from Northern Virginia. But, as you note, one result of the Friday night slot has been to make the program largely local–to exclude people who do have that drive to get here. It’s something we’re very much aware of, and something we will address. There are lots of possible solutions, including perhaps repeating programs Saturday mornings. We have considered Saturday evenings, but Saturdays are usually so packed with activities that we have stayed away. But, your point is very well taken.

  3. I’d like to echo Greg’s point. The Friday afternoon torture of I-95 kept me away.

    Repeats on Saturday or Sunday would be very welcome!

  4. Donald Pfanz and Caity Stuart did an excellent job with the new speaker system. Had a great time in spite of the rain. Very informative,

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s